Jan. 21, 2011
The University of New Mexico women's basketball team will be hosting UNLV for "Pack The Pit" this Saturday at 2 p.m. in The Pit. Fans can purchase tickets for "Pack The Pit" for only $4. Saturday's game can be heard live on 610 AM The Sports Animal and on GoLobos.com. GameTracker and live video streaming will also be provided for Saturday's game on GoLobos.com.
Sponsors for Saturday's game are Route 66 Hotel and Casino and 610 the Sports Animal.
ON THE HORIZON
New Mexico will return on the road next week to take on conference leader TCU and BYU. The Lobos will travel to Fort Worth, Texas to take on the Horned Frogs at 5:30 p.m. on Jan. 26. The Lobos then head to Provo, Utah to take on the Cougars at 1 p.m. on Jan. 29. GameTracker and live audio will be provided for both games on GoLobos.com.
LAST TIME OUT
New Mexico fell to Utah, 56-53 in The Pit on Wednesday. The Lobos started out sluggish in the first half only shooting 22.2 percent on the floor against the Utes. Despite its poor shooting in the first half, New Mexico came out in the second half shooting 42.1 percent on the floor and 50 percent from long range. Junior Lauren Taylor led all scorers with 21 points, which included making a career-high 13 free throws. Freshman Jasmine Patterson added 11 points for the Lobos. Junior Porche Torrance had a career-high five steals and added three blocks on defense.
The Rebels come into Saturday's game with an 8-11 record this season and a 1-4 record in the Mountain West Conference. UNLV fell at Colorado State on Wednesday, 68-63. Despite shooting 40.4 percent (21-52) on the floor against the Rams, the Rebels only shot 12.5 percent (2-16) from long range. Sandrine Nzeukou and Erica Helms led the Rebels with 13 points each on Wednesday. The Rebels have also fallen to BYU (75-64), TCU (68-60) and San Diego State (55-52) in their first three conference games this season. UNLV's only conference win this season came on Jan. 15 against Air Force when it won 63-54.
UNLV brings in an experienced team this year with nine upperclassmen and only five underclassmen. Sophomore Kelli Thompson leads the Rebels with 13.5 points per game. Junior Jamie Smith leads UNLV on the boards, averaging 8.1 rebounds per game and also adds 8.4 points per game. Sophomore Mia Bell runs the offense, dishing out 4.5 assists per game.
Saturday's game against UNLV will be the 41st meeting between the Lobos and the Rebels. UNLV currently leads the all-time series 17-23 with each team taking a game the past two seasons. In the most recent matchup last season, the Rebels won in The Pit, 65-59 on Feb. 10, 2010. New Mexico won the first game last season, 63-54 in Las Vegas, Nev. on Jan. 9, 2010.
During conference play this season, the Lobos have been finding it difficult to shoot in the first half. New Mexico is only shooting 28.3 percent on the floor and 20.5 percent from long range during the first half. The Lobos are also only averaging 22 points a game in the first half. However, in the second half New Mexico improves to shooting 35.5 percent on the floor and 37.1 percent from long range. The Lobos also average 10.8 more points in the second half.
Over the past five games the Lobos have shot 81.8 percent (81-99) from the free-throw line, including two games where they shot a season-high 90.5 percent (19-21) against New Mexico State and Colorado State. Overall this season, New Mexico is shooting 71.8 percent (252-351) compared to its opponents who are only shooting 68.1 percent (184-270) from the free-throw line. The Lobos have shot 81 more free throws than their opponents this season and have made 68 of those free throws for an 83.9 free-throw percentage on the extra free throws attempted.
Junior Lauren Taylor is currently leading the team in free-throw percentage shooting 87.3 percent from the line. She is ranked 36th in the Nation in free-throw percentage and is also second in the conference with that mark this season. Freshman Jasmine Patterson is second on the team in free-throw percentage, shooting 82.5 percent to put her fifth in the conference. Taylor ended her consecutive free-throw streak at 28, which lasted through eight straight games. Her streak started on Dec. 4 at Arizona State and ended on Jan. 19 against Utah. Taylor also currently ranks third all-time in the UNM record books in career free-throw percentage, hitting 82.2 percent (134-163) from the free-throw line.
The Lobos are currently ranked sixth in the nation in attendance this season. New Mexico is averaging 7,613 fans a game and have a total of 60,906 fans that have attended all eight games so far this season. Tennessee (12,970), Louisville (10,653), Connecticut (9,897), Iowa State (8,602) and Notre Dame (8,498) are the only other schools in the nation averaging more fans than the Lobos. The next closest Mountain West Conference school is Wyoming which ranks 33rd, averaging 3,188 fans a game.